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PIF invests $1 billion in gaming company Embraer Group; Saudi Arabia introduces new Hajj regulations for Western pilgrims; Indonesia is developing a national tourism development index; Saudi Arabia allocates $100 million for tourism training; Tourism rebounds in Malaysia; Lady of Heaven film taken from UK cinemas.

PIF invests $1 billion in gaming company Embraer Group

Savvy Gaming Company, of the Saudi sovereign wealth fund, acquired 100 million shares for 1 billion dollars from the Swedish group Embraer, making it the group’s second largest shareholder, the FinancialTimes reported. The Savvy Gaming Company was launched this year by the Public Investment Fund (PIF), acquiring Modern Times Group’s esports division for $1 billion in January, and competitive multiplayer technology platform Faceit.

In May, PIF acquired a 5% stake worth $2.98 billion in Nintendo of Japan, and earlier in the year undisclosed stakes in Nexon and Capcom, maker of the Street Fighter franchise. . In 2021, PIF invested $3 billion in Activision Blizzard, Electronic Arts, and Take-Two Interactive. In May, Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman’s MiSK Foundation acquired a 97% stake in Japanese company SNK Corporation, maker of the games Metal Slug and Fatal Fury.

The gaming market in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt is estimated at $1.76 billion, according to a report by Niko Partners, led by Saudi Arabia at $1 billion, UAE at 520 million and Egypt at $172 million. According to a survey by the Ministry of Sports, about half of Saudis consider themselves regular players, while 67% (23.5 million) said they were game enthusiasts.

Saudi Arabia introduces new Hajj regulations for Western pilgrims

Saudi Arabia’s Hajj ministry has issued new regulations requiring Muslim pilgrims from Europe, the Americas and Australia to book through the government’s Motawif website, reports Middle Eastern Eye. Pilgrims will be entered into an “automated lottery” draw and, if accepted, will be required to book flights and hotels through the website. No date has been released as to when this will begin, but travel agencies have been asked to reimburse pilgrims. The kingdom’s long-term policy has been to allocate a certain number of pilgrims per country.

Indonesia Develops National Tourism Development Index

The Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy created the National Tourism Development Index platform to measure the extent of the role of regional governments in building tourism ecosystems. It is based on the World Travel and Tourism Development Index (TTDI) of the WEF (World Economic Forum). indicator. The Indonesian index is to be launched at the end of the year, said TribuneBatam.

The country saw tourism rebound in 2022, attracting almost 50 times more foreign visitors in April than the same month last year, up 172.27% to 111,1110, according to data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS ). Indonesia attracted 13.03 million foreign tourist arrivals in 2019, falling to 2.2 million in 2020, and only 141,211 in 2021, reported The star.

Saudi Arabia allocates $100 million for tourism training

The Ministry of Tourism has launched a $100 million program to train 100,000 young Saudis a year in the tourism and hospitality sector, reported Markets Insider. As part of Vision 2030, Saudi Arabia aims to attract 100 million tourists and create 1 million jobs. The Tourism Trailblazers program aims to develop trainees at all career levels across the country, while training fellowships are to be awarded at institutions in France, Spain, Switzerland, UK, Australia and in Italy.

“It is vital that we invest in our young people now. Creating a skilled workforce with the talent and ambition to support and drive the tourism sector regionally and globally is key to achieving Vision 2030. This program demonstrates our commitment to empowering young people by providing them with the right skills, support and opportunities to shape the future of the tourism industry.” Tourism Minister Ahmed Al Khateeb said.

Tourism rebounds in Malaysia

Malaysia, which was ranked the top Muslim destination by CrescentRating, has seen a rebound in visitor numbers, with 1 million arrivals since early April. Around 60%, however, come from neighboring Singapore. The country hopes to attract 5 million tourists this year, the Malaysian Travel and Travel Agents Association (MATTA) said. Xinhua Press Agency. Malaysia attracted 26.1 million arrivals in 2019, generating $19.59 billion, falling to 4.33 million arrivals in 2020 and 130,000 arrivals in 2021.

Lady of Heaven film removed from UK cinemas

A film about the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has been pulled by one of the UK’s biggest cinema chains following blasphemy protests, reports Middle Eastern Eye. Released in early June, there were several protests in UK cities, prompting Cineworld to cancel screenings. The $15 million film, directed by Eli King and written by Kuwaiti-born Sheikh Yasser al-Habib, tells the story of Fatima and the contemporary era, with links to the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq. Fatima’s face is not depicted, being a faceless figure in a black shroud, but the face of the Prophet has been depicted.

Protesters accused the film of misrepresenting and negatively portraying three of Islam’s most prominent figures and of stoking sectarian hatred. Over 120,000 people have signed a petition calling for the film to be removed from UK cinemas.

The film has been banned in Egypt and Pakistan, while Iranian clerics have issued fatwas against its viewing, saying it could cause sectarian discord, according to the Tehran Times.